Ptolemy I Soter, Macedonian general

Ptolemy I Soter, Macedonian general

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Credit: SHEILA TERRY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Ptolemy I Soter (367-283 BC), Macedonian general, descending the steps at the temple of the Muses, coloured historical artwork. Ptolemy I Soter, who ruled Egypt between 323 and 283 BC, is depicted here overseeing the construction of the Library of Alexandria in ancient Egypt. The temple of the Muses (the Mouseion) was the first part of the library complex to be built. It housed music, poetry, a philosophical school and library, and a gallery of sacred texts. The latin word museum is derived from this. Engraving from the 19th century book Vies des Savants Illustres.

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